The cover drive is one of the most elegant looking shots in cricket and made to look even more so by some of the most attractive players in World cricket history. Therefore we decided to showcase some of the best cover drivers that graced the game amongst right hand batsmen. We shall do the same exercise in future for left handers too.
Zaheer Abbas : There were many players in the 70s who used to play fine cover drives like Viv Richards, Greg Chappell, Viswanath ,Gavaskar and Majid Khan to name a few but Zaheer Abbas was the one who used to play it with minimum of effort using his wrists beautifully to give direction to the ball between the gaps for boundaries and he was great to watch.
GR Viswanath: Though square cuts has been Vishi’s signature shot, he was a glorious player of the cover drive, with great wrist, bottomhand and hand eye coordination. Super player.
Viv Richards:Viv’s head was absolute still when he used to execute his superb cover drives and his shots were often hit with brute power and a touch of arrogance as he did for all his shots.
Azharuddin: Azhar in 1980s and 90s used to play superb cover drives, very wristy and balanced in his footwork, and like Zaheer ,great to watch.
Sachin Tendulkar: The most complete batsman and a great cover driver ,off both front and backfoot, perfect technique to play the shot and wonderful to watch as usual.
Carl Hooper : He was the most Indian of all West Indies batters with his wrist usage and classical style rather than brute power and a very fine cover driver.
Rahul Dravid : The Wall had good repertoire of shots to supplement his defensive skills. And cover drive has been one of his favourite shots which he used to play with great elegance.
VVS Laxman : Timing, wristwork was all VVS needed to guide his fabulous cover drives through the gaps. Absolute artist.
Aravinda DSilva : The Srilankan great was a genius in strokeplay and cover drive was one of his many shots. A bottom handed player with strong wrists ,his cover drives packed a lot of punch and was a treat to watch.
Mark Waugh : One of the greatest cover drivers ever both off front and back foot . Superb footwork . Absolute treat to watch and ruthlessly elegant. Worth travelling miles to watch.
Damien Martyn : He was born to play the cover drive. Elegant , minimum footwork, great hands and wrists, head still and “unfair” gift of timing!! His backfoot defensive blocks speed to the fence, such was his timing . Damien Martyn playing the cover drive is a sight for Gods. Majestic !! Hence a little longer footage.
Ian Bell : One of the few elegant English batsman to have graced the game. And he plays gem of a cover drive. Great to watch.
Virat Kohli : The modern master and the current pioneer of the cover drive. Beautiful hands, footwork and great head position. A predominantly front foot cover driver. Superb to watch and in a classical mould.
There were many other batters with great cover drives, past and recent past who could have easily made the above list. However ,here we just made an effort to choose the most elegant and attractive of the lot with all due respect to the greats not listed above.